Supervisors: Professor Alena Ledeneva and Professor Eric Gordy
Present Status: PhD candidate
Working title of thesis: Foreign Educated Professionals in Corrupt Environments: The Case of the Bolashak International Scholarship
Research: I propose to study the influence of international education on corruption looking at the Bolashak international scholarship programme funded since 1993 by the government of Kazakhstan, a Central Asian country suffering from endemic corruption. The questions that will guide my explorations are: Do international educational projects influence corruption levels in corrupt environments? How do foreign educated professionals adapt to or change highly corrupt environments? What are the determinants and mechanisms of these processes? I will use the framework proposed by institutional theory to support and structure my thinking on the questions posed. It is expected that beyond understanding of the link between international education and corruption, the proposed research might contribute to better comprehension of the nature of corruption and the processes and determinants of change of norms that allow for its existence in highly-corrupt environments.